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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Read!
Control Point is a fantastic read. It is a step away from my “normal” fantasy read of different worlds and times. Magic has been “reawakened” in the modern world and the story is set around Lt. Oscar Britton in the US Military.

Those that discover they have a magical ability and do not turn themselves over to the military, who run, must...
Published 2 months ago by GarethC4rdg

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creating its own sub-genre?
This is a very intriguing mix, the story of what would have happened if Harry Potter hadn't realised he was a magician until he became a military helicopter pilot. This draws heavily on the X-Men mythos, with a society that hates and fears the Latents - humans who have developed magical powers such as necromancy, elemental manipulation and - in the case of our...
Published 11 months ago by The Amazon J


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creating its own sub-genre?, 18 Jan 2014
By 
The Amazon J (Various, time dependent) - See all my reviews
This is a very intriguing mix, the story of what would have happened if Harry Potter hadn't realised he was a magician until he became a military helicopter pilot. This draws heavily on the X-Men mythos, with a society that hates and fears the Latents - humans who have developed magical powers such as necromancy, elemental manipulation and - in the case of our protagonist, Oscar Britten - 'portomancy' - the ability to travel anywhere on Earth, and between dimensions, at will. Stamping home the X-Men influence is the Magneto like character we meet halfway through the book, who considers Latents the next step of evolution, and wishes to enslave humankind.
But the author brings his own knowledge of military process to bear and a healthy imagination, giving us a dystopian US background, another dimension where Earth is at war with goblins and every other magical inhabitant, and a backstory of Native Americans fighting for secession with their own magical powers.
I think this book would appeal to Tom Clancy type readers, who want fast action, gritty heroes, and sexy ladies. For the typical fantasy reader, it may be a little on the 'action packed' side, a little two dimensional. The author does show fantastic confidence for a debut; clearly creating a large universe and background with plenty of potential for future sequels.
However my main bugbear was with the main character; much is made of the writer's military background, and yet his main character is a soldier who is completely incapable of following any order without questioning it, even before he develops his powers. Whilst I think this is done to emphasise Oscar's moral core (this is a US military we don't normally see in fiction, effectively enforcing a police state) I couldn't help but think Oscar would have been more likely to have been in the glasshouse than at the controls of a helicopter if this was his attitude to military discipline. I would rather have seen a gradual decline in his desire to follow orders. This also created a pretty repetitive narrative to the novel; Oscar gets orders, Oscar rebels, Oscar gets put in his place, repeat. This makes it feel like a very long time until we get to the heart of darkness. The other thing that irritates me is the seemingly uniform attitude to Latents. When Oscar manifests, he runs to his parents and then his best friend. If my best friend turned up at my door with 'mutant powers' I would think it was incredibly cool; everyone in this America immediately panics and calls the authorities, who they believe will *kill* their best friend / son, etc. That was a bit too much of a stretch of the imagination for me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Army Hills 90210, 6 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Control Point (Shadow Ops) (Paperback)
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In my mind's eye I picture the army as a place that takes people and moulds them into soldiers. People become trained to the level were instinct kicks in at times of crisis and orders are followed without question. As an ex-soldier himself I imagine that author Myke Cole would know far better than me and in his military science fiction novel `Control Point' he paints the life of solider much different than I imagined. True this is a world where people are waking up with magical powers and being coerced into joining the force, but are those trained to defend us really as introverted and questioning as this bunch?

Lieutenant Oscar Britton is the main character in `Control Point', a lifelong military man he is trained to take out illegal magical users, only to become one himself. The book starts off running with some great action set pieces combining realistic warfare with added magical powers such as wind, fire and earth. Once the book settles down, problems begin to appear. Oscar is military through and through, so why is he always questioning authority? I always believed that you were promoted to Lieutenant by buying into the system, not constantly bucking it. Things begin poorly as Oscar goes on a mini rampage, although he has spent years fighting others who have done this - he is well aware of the consequences. The next part of the book has him being trained to use his powers, but he is constantly resisting. I can't imagine a man so ingrained in army life would act like this.

The problems of army life versus civilian attitudes continue throughout the book, vast chunks of the training segments read more like `Beverly Hills 90210' than army camp. It is a real shame that the relationships appear so teen angsty as the idea of a world burgeoning with magic is a great one. Cole is able to write some fantastic fight scenes, the more restricted and intense the better. It is just the relationship soap opera that links these segments together than rings false and drags the book into the average.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Read!, 29 Sep 2014
Control Point is a fantastic read. It is a step away from my “normal” fantasy read of different worlds and times. Magic has been “reawakened” in the modern world and the story is set around Lt. Oscar Britton in the US Military.

Those that discover they have a magical ability and do not turn themselves over to the military, who run, must be contained else they could cause serious damage to themselves and those around them. This is where we come into the story, Oscar’s team trying to contain one of these “Selfers”, but in a support role to the Supernatural Operations Corps.

From here the story of Oscar Britton unfolds and I was taken on an emotional ride of a man trying to come to terms with a changing world and his place in it. Where should he belong, in the military which he loves and lives for, or somewhere away from their control? The continued inner dialog with himself is impressively written and will keep you guessing, but more than that, I was truly drawn in by it and found myself almost shouting my opinion to him!

I’ve not read a military based book for a long time, probably since reading a story about the formation of the SAS in the North African desert during World War Two – and that was in my early teenage years. I was a bit hesitant when I first picked it up. I should not have been. Military acronyms used are explained deftly after their first use and they really do help set the atmosphere and tone of the book.

I found the characters very well written and could easily picture them in my mind and how they were finding themselves in this “new world”, each with their own flaws, regrets, secrets and fears. Their interactions were spot on.

The pace of the book is perfect, I didn’t want to put it down. I was, and am, itching for more. Which way will the characters go? How sadistic is Fitzy going to get? What will Oscar decide?

The quote on the front cover reads “Black Hawk Down meets the X-Men… Military fantasy like you’ve never seen it before”, though I’ve not read Black Hawk Down (or seen the film), I could not agree more. Myke has secured himself on my list of authors who I must and will read and I’d love to see this made into a film too! The follow up, Fortress Frontier, is definitely in my sights to be read this year.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars some interesting ideas, 10 Dec 2012
By 
E. Ramshaw - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Control Point (Shadow Ops) (Paperback)
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A military officer develops special powers and is forced to choose between death or working for a covert force battling against other magic users who are, basically, rouge

But this changes when he can open portals with his powers, to another world filled with creatures who also have powers

On the whole this was a good read

I thought the storyline was good and had plenty of action-although it was a bit confusing with all the acronyms used but that was only a minor issue

The characters were quite well described and the scenes were well set up

I would say on the whole a good story and I would certainly like to read a follow up(if there was one)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars blimey, didn't expect that!, 2 Mar 2014
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I really didn't know what to expect.

This is now a new genre for me, really great read.

The action sequences were 'read so fast that two pages are gone without you knowing it'

Can't wait to see what book 2 brings
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Quite a good read, 23 Feb 2014
By 
S. M. Watts "Simon" (UK) - See all my reviews
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Nothing sensational but a good read for those like me who enjoy this kind of read

One for the plane or the beach, not a serious read
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Military fiction meets fantasy, 2 Oct 2012
By 
K. Trebell (Cornwall, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Control Point (Shadow Ops) (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Control Point is the story of Oscar Britton, a military operative in an alternative world where people are coming up "latent" developing magical abilities. Britton, clearly a man troubled by the role he's being asked to play stopping these people when they develop these skills and capturing or eliminating them, finds himself part of the problem when he develops "portamancy" skills - an ability to open up gateways between worlds or dimensions.

The book is very fast paced and was a fairly easy read. I wasn't too surprised to find the author was former US military himself, the writing shows a real knowledge of the subject. He's also a self proclaimed D&D nut and this story has seen him combine his real world experience with that interest to create an interesting "what if". The approach very much reflected the authors US military origins in it's style when the action got going, though is a balance here not just non-stop mindless violence and it leaned more to something a military fan would truly enjoy than something for the more traditional fantasy fan like myself. I struggled to relate to the main character, I could understand his struggles and sympathise but I didn't entirely like the way he came across. Perhaps because he was written as a guy who'd been more soldier than person for a long time.

The book is certainly interesting. The idea of magic developing but not entirely randomly, with a number of schools of magic deriving from the range of possible abilities was interesting and reflected our love of categorising and pigeon holing everything, even things still poorly understood.

The desire for our governments to control anything that might give people power, or could be seen as a danger to liberty (or indeed to their own institutions) is strongly reflected in this book as is the struggle someone who's always supported that system might have when they find themself on the wrong side of it.

There's also a strong metaphor here for our own worlds troubles. We find other worlds we don't know so we can't help ourselves considering it's inhabitants with their natural "latency" as a threat and thus justifying a desire to control their world. Trying to control places you don't understand, not understanding it's people and giving them no reason to understand or relate to you and then dealing with the consequence when they fight back? It felt like the author was writing from experience.

So overall this wasn't a book I loved, it wasn't really written in a style i was entirely comfortable but it was quite well written and for action/fantasy there were lots of ideas and things to get you thinking. Overall a promising start to the series and something fans of military fiction and fantasy might well enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars He's big, brave, not very bright - but he's got magic., 25 Sep 2012
This review is from: Control Point (Shadow Ops) (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a rip-roaring story of magic in the American armed forces, let down somewhat by a general, rather wearing gungho attitude; a hero, Oscar Britton, who is what they call a 'latent' (someone suddenly manifesting magical powers) who vacillates so much that he should be spinning on the spot. Oscar is first seen as an Army Lieutenant, disputing the treatment of teenage latents with an Officer of SOC (Supernatural Operations Corps). Later the same night his talents emerge, in his case portamancy (the opening of 'gates' into other locations)and as this is a prohibited latency he panics and runs.
Of course he is caught and forced to work and train for SOC with a crew of other misfits. His army training disposes him to like the training; his main gripe is he gets no respect and he spends most of the book wondering whether to try to escape or make the best of a bad job. And lack of self-knowledge means that when he screws up he screw up big.
Secondary characters are interesting: Swift, Scylla, Therese, Truelove and Downer, the inimitable Marty and the appalling Fitzsimmons seem more fleshed out than Oscar. Dialogue was generally pretty clunky and there was a lot of repetitive soul-searching that slowed things down without adding much to the reader's knowledge.
The book is exciting, and I enjoyed the training sequences as much as anything. Magic here is far from gentle and morality very skewed, but the story is readable and the ending was suitable and ensured 'portals' to more of the series. Not sure if I'd take this one further, I prefer my urban fantasy less militarised.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent fast-paced fun: magic + machine guns!, 19 Aug 2012
By 
Mrs. S. Williams (Sterling, Virginia USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Control Point (Shadow Ops) (Paperback)
This book's a riot. Myke Cole lets loose with a vivid imagination overlaying genuine military experience that forms the foundation of the tale. A solid magic systemis coupled to the protagonist's very real struggle with how to deal with the radical changes in fortune thrust upon him.

Go.Read!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast Paced and Fresh, 18 Aug 2012
By 
Chase Marshall "CMarshall" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Control Point (Shadow Ops) (Paperback)
Control Point is one of a handful of urban fantasy novels which I have read. I was hesitant but it had a really good blurb and an awesome cover so I thought I'd give it a shot. I'm glad I did.

Control Point is always moving, one moment the characters will be in a training session and next moment they are jumping to combat the latest pandemonium that happens to be erupting. The fight scenes are choreographed extremely well and flow from one moment to the next seamlessly.

The magic system is unique and works well with the modern setting of the book. The US government however doesn't allow anyone to use it outside of a regulated military environment but it seems that quite often people who are Latent ( magic user ) run out of fear and lack of understanding and the books is based around choices and how they impact the main protagonist.

All in all I really enjoyed it, fun read and book 2 is due out in February.
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Control Point (Shadow Ops)
Control Point (Shadow Ops) by Myke Cole (Paperback - 16 Aug 2012)
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